Premises liability laws pertain to injuries and damages sustained on private property. Premises liability claims may also arise from injuries sustained on government-controlled property, but the process of pursuing a claim against a public office is different from one against a private property owner. If a property owner somehow allows a lawful visitor to his or her property to suffer an injury from a foreseeable hazard, the property owner will likely absorb liability for the victim’s damages. Speak to our premises liability lawyer today to see if you have a case.
Many possible injuries could lead to premises liability claims, including slip and fall accidents, negligent security-related injuries, dog attacks, and more. Anyone injured due to negligent property management or maintenance in Las Vegas should contact J. Cogburn Law today to schedule a consultation with one of our top-rated Las Vegas personal injury attorneys.
What Is Premises Liability?
Premises liability comes into play in personal injury cases where a victim has suffered from an injury caused by some type of unsafe condition on someone else’s property. Premises liability cases are based on negligence. In order to win a premises liability case, the victim has to prove that the property owner was negligent by not maintaining their property properly.
What Is A Property Owner’s Reasonable Duty of Care?
The reasonable duty of care can be determined by what type of guest you were at the time of the accident. A property owner should prevent any dangerous conditions on their properties. If a dangerous condition exists, then the owner has the obligation to warn people of that condition. There are three types of guests the courts recognize on someone else’s property:
An invitee, for example, can be a visitor to restaurants buying and eating food. A licensee can be someone who is installing a new computer system in an office building. And a trespasser can be someone who just stopped by at a convenience store to use the restroom but had no intention of purchasing anything.
Nevada courts have established that a property owner can have reduced liability to trespassers, however, they can’t intentionally harm or injure a trespasser.
Property owners are required to let people know of dangerous conditions on the property if they know about the condition. This depends on how open and obvious the condition is. Whether the property owner should have known about the condition or not will be determined in trial according to the facts of the case.
What Needs To Be Proven In A Premises Liability Case?
Your lawyer needs to establish 5 things in order to have a valid premises liability claim:
- The defendant owned or was in charge of the property when the accident happened.
- That you had permission to be in the premises at the time of the injury
- That at the time of the injury the property was in a dangerous condition
- That the defendant knew about or should have known about the dangerous condition
- That said dangerous conditions caused the injuries
What Is The Statute Of Limitations In A Premises Liability Case?
You should file your case within the Nevada statute of limitations. You only have two years in Nevada to file a personal injury lawsuit. This means, two years from the date of your accident. It doesn’t matter if you only started to realize you were injured two weeks after the accident. The two years start when the accident took place.
What Are Liability Waivers In Las Vegas?
Liability waivers (or exculpatory clauses) in Las Vegas are clauses specified in contracts that release a property owner or tenant from fault if the person who signs the contract gets injured while on the premises.
When Does The “Open And Obvious” Defense Apply In Las Vegas Premises Liability Cases?
According to Nevada premises liability laws, a property owner’s duty of care does not extend to open and obvious dangerous conditions. This means these conditions are so easy to notice that any reasonable person would be aware and be cautious around them. So, if someone gets injured in an open and obvious condition, like a cliff or a lake, then they might not have a good negligence case against the owner of the property. The property owner can easily argue that the condition was already noticeable and therefore the fault lies with the injured victim for not being careful around the hazard.
What Is An Attractive Nuisance?
Some property owners may have things on their properties that are irresistible to children, and those property owners must take care to prevent injuries should a child investigate these attractive nuisances. An attractive nuisance could be an unfenced swimming pool, a tire swing, or a tree that looks perfect for climbing. If a neighbor’s child could foreseeably wander onto the property to investigate such an attractive nuisance and suffer an injury, the property owner should take reasonable steps to prevent such injuries. Learn more about the attractive nuisance doctrine here.
How Much Is My Las Vegas Premises Liability Case Worth?
Plaintiffs who succeed with their premises liability claims can secure several types of compensation.
- Immediate and future medical expenses resulting from the injury. For example, medical expense damages can include hospital bills, airlift or ambulance fees, prescription costs, and any costs for necessary ongoing care following an injury such as physical therapy.
- Wages lost during recovery or the time in the lawsuit. Additionally, if the plaintiff suffered a permanent disability that prevents working in the future or returning to the same job, the plaintiff may be able to secure compensation for lost future earnings.
- Physical pain, emotional suffering, and psychological distress resulting from a personal injury. Nevada does not place any cap or limit on pain and suffering recovery except in medical malpractice cases.
- Replacement or repair costs. If a property owner’s negligence somehow damaged or destroyed the plaintiff’s personal property, such as a smartphone or expensive wristwatch, the plaintiff can claim those as damages as well.
- Punitive damages if the defendant’s negligence exceeds the scope of typical negligence or involved any type of criminal activity. For example, if a visitor on private property suffered burn injuries when the property owner’s methamphetamine lab exploded, the property owner would very likely face punitive damages due to the criminal activity taking place on the property.
The first step in securing compensation after a premises liability accident is to contact a Las Vegas premises liability attorney. Contact J. Cogburn Law today to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our top-rated attorneys. Once we know the details of your premises liability claim we can let you know what to expect from the lawsuit process, the types of compensation you could expect if you win, and how our firm can help.
What Are The Most Common Premises Liability Claims?
Many different types of premises liability claims exist.
- Slip and fall claims can arise when a property owner fails to adequately clear snow and ice, repair a broken staircase, or leaves walking paths cluttered. Slip and fall accidents can also happen from poor lighting, tripping hazards, wet floors, and loose or broken floorboards or steps.
- Escalator and elevator accidents require maintenance. If they are not kept properly maintained and an accident happens because of this neglect, the victim can hold the owner responsible for the injuries.
- Dog attacks are often unpredictable; some dogs with no history of violence suddenly lash out, sometimes for seemingly no reason. Unlike some other states, Nevada has no specific laws regarding dog bites. Instead, the court will refer to precedents set by previous, similar cases. Some areas of Nevada have local ordinances with strict requirements for handling dogs, and a dog owner who violates these statutes would likely qualify as negligent per se.
This is not a complete list; any accident that occurs on a privately owned property could potentially lead to a premises liability claim if the victim can prove that the property owner could foresee the incident and the property owner failed to exercise reasonable care of the property.
Is Negligent Security Considered a Premises Liability Action?
Yes, it is. A victim of a criminal attack while they were on someone else’s property can be considered a premises liability action. Especially if it was in a commercial property. Business owners have the obligation to make sure their property is safe for the public to go. This includes security measures. If you were a victim of a crime that occurred because of negligent security, property owners can be liable.
Why Is Hiring A Premises Liability Lawyer Important?
Some people with personal injury claims may believe their claims are so straightforward that they can manage self-representation and save money on legal fees. The average person with no legal experience or training will have a great deal of difficulty navigating the Las Vegas court system’s strict filing deadlines and other requirements, especially when recovering from a premises liability injury. No matter how open-and-shut a claim may appear at first, countless possible complicating factors can arise. A plaintiff may not know how to handle these situations without professional legal representation.
Hiring an experienced Las Vegas injury accident lawyer to handle a premises liability claim not only increases the plaintiff’s chances of succeeding with the claim but will also likely lead to more compensation than a plaintiff could have secured on his or her own.
Why Hire J. Cogburn Law For Your Premises Liability Case?
- Our firm has a reputation for offering top-notch, individualized legal representation in a wide variety of civil claims. Las Vegas residents know that when they need personal injury representation, J. Cogburn Law offers unparalleled service.
- We have successfully handled a plethora of personal injury claims since 2005 and our firm focuses specifically on personal injury law.
- We are trial lawyers. We understand that the trial value and settlement value of a case can be very different and are not afraid to take our clients’ cases to trial to ensure they receive the most compensation possible for their personal injury claims.
- We offer contingency fee billing. This means we stake our success on yours; we do not collect legal fees unless we win your case.
Speak to a Las Vegas premises liability lawyer today at (727) 747-6000. You can also submit a contact form below.